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5 min read

No Three’s Company

 

The Bulls are going to be a very poor three-point shooting team next year. This is not so much an opinion as it is one big universally accepted truth. The Bulls are a joke and the Warriors are splitting their collective sides at the prospect of outshooting an entire team by 40% from the three-point arc. There are, however, some potential solutions to the anticipated shooting woes. Those ideas will be described here, with a largely arbitrary percentage-based score awarded to each idea based on how viable an option it seems to be.

Option 1: Injure everyone who is good at shooting 3’s.

This step is a legally grey area, and a shade of grey that is really quite close to black unless you look at it under a very special light. However, it will guarantee that you win games, if only because a lot of good players are hurt, necessitating that bench players like Marcelo Huertas will suddenly be playing 35 minutes a game. That sounds terrific, and the Bulls will probably enjoy playing against Marcelo Huertas very much. I’m quite sure Marcelo would also enjoy it, because in my experience, basketball is still fun when you play against people better than you (I have always played basketball against people that are better than me).

I can’t advocate for crippling a huge number of people, even in the name of a perfect season. So as ideas go, this option gets an Option Score (OS) of: 50%. 

Option 2: Paint over all 60 three-point lines at NBA arenas.

In this solution, the Bulls don’t have to shoot threes anymore, because no one can shoot threes. If no one knows where the three-point lines are, refs will not do the little “ok” gesture with their fingers (the one that has come to mean “3” instead) and so the scorers will add two points to the score and everything is worth the same, and no one will ever join the 50-40-90 club. It’s the worst version of “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie”. There are a few downsides to this plan. One, Mike Breen will never say “bang” again, which is a national tragedy and a loss that would personally cut very deeply. Two, you would have to break into 29 different stadiums, which involves a lot of travel and paint, not to mention legal issues. This is also a grey area, but hopefully you have enough paint left over from this nationwide vandalism to color the grey area into something more exciting, like a scarlet or cerulean area.

Despite some difficulties with paint logistics, this idea gets an OS of: 72%

Option 3: Replace the Bulls’ arms with robot arms that are more effective at shooting threes.

Pretty sure this one is not illegal yet. The Bulls medical staff has a long history with recent players, so this operation should be right in their metaphorical wheelhouse. The biggest pro here, aside from the obvious better-at-shooting-threes thing, is that all the Bulls players look like Cyborg. Cyborg is the best character in Teen Titans, and also the most devastating in a fight. The odds are pretty good that Rondo will fight someone during the year, possibly a teammate, so this is something worth preparing for. Cyborg Rondo fighting Cyborg Dwyane Wade is what the plot of Real Steel should have been. Hugh Jackman could have played Fred Hoiberg, and it would have been terrific. I’m thinking of all the Wade and Rondo highlights that would have been better if they had robot arms, like the one where Rondo dives and snags the loose ball between Jason Williams’ legs as Williams is mid-sprint. In the version of this highlight with robot arms, Rondo dives from half-court and his arms just extend 35 feet like Mr. Fantastic and he snatches the ball with his iron claw hand. The team could also then change its name to the Mechanical Bulls, which is very funny to me right now, but leaves the other teams stuck with garbage names. Still, the opportunity for terrific puns about cyborg players (Tony Starker is my favorite one so far) is a beautiful thing.

This one, if the correct arms can be invented, gets an OS of 81%. It’s the winner. Please, Adam Silver. Make this happen.

Option 4: Scare all the shooters with dirty play

This is similar to the first idea but for the fact that the NBA was legitimately played this way for a while. People always complain about Steph being coddled by the refs, so let him have it! Have wing defenders mimic Bruce Bowen and slide underneath shooters when they start hitting a groove. Teach Robin Lopez to play like a afro-laden Bill Laimbeer and just pound the snot out of anyone in the paint. Let Bobby Ports channel his own version of the Worm; after all, he’s already got the crazy eyes down. This is maybe the most realistic of the plans and easiest to implement, as it’s as simple as playing a physical game and testing the referee’s vision. It’s also the most boring, unless Rondo tries to fight someone. I realize I brought that up earlier, and that it’s much more exciting with robot arms, but Rondo fighting people is an exceptional sight regardless. It’s just like Isiah. I guess I just want the Bulls to be the Bad Boy Pistons. Ew. That feels wrong.

Ease of implementation and practicality boost the Option Score here, but the Bad Boy comparisons bring it back down. I cannot endorse turning the Bulls into literally the worst thing to happen to the Bulls. OS: 67.4%

There are ways of fixing the shooting issue in Chicago. Most of them don’t work, at least not in the next 15 years (I’m holding out hope for some engineering whiz to optimize the robot arms), but it helps to get through what looks to be a rough-and-tumble season for the Bulls. If denial is the first stage of acceptance, invention has to be at least stage four.

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